Osmium Isotopic Evidence for Ancient Subcontinental Lithospheric Mantle Beneath the Kerguelen Islands, Southern Indian Ocean

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Abstract

Upper mantle xenoliths found in ocean island basalts are an important window through which the oceanic mantle lithosphere may be viewed directly.Osmium isotopic data on peridotite xenoliths from the Kerguelen Islands, an archipelago that is located on the northern Kerguelen Plateau in the southern Indian Ocean, demonstrate that pieces of mantle of diverse provenance are present beneath the Islands. In particular, peridotites with unradiogenic osmium and ancient rhenium-depletion ages (to 1.36 x 109 years old) may be pieces of the Gondwanaland subcontinental lithosphere that were incorporated into the Indian Ocean lithosphere as a result of the rifting process.

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